—Mazari refutes Asif’s criticism, says PML-N govt’s foreign policy was never discussed in parliament
ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Khawaja Asif on Wednesday said the nation had to face embarrassment owing to the incumbent government’s foreign policy performance.
Addressing the National Assembly, Asif criticised the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI)-led government and its foreign policies.
“When Prime Minister Imran Khan visited Saudi Arabia, PTI leaders said he brought back ‘10 arab’ but it is yet to be ascertained whether they meant 10 Arabs or Rs10 billion,” the PML-N leader mocked.
He further said, “Pakistan suffered a setback following India’s refusal to hold a meeting between foreign ministers of the two countries.”
“Doubts were also created over China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC),” he asserted.
Further lashing out at the government, the PML-N leader said, “An announcement regarding granting citizenship to Afghan refugees was later turned into a proposal.”
Khawaja Asif also said that the government’s mini budget has triggered inflation in the country.
He said that the foreign minister should forcefully raise the issue of Kashmir dispute and the plight of Kashmiri people at the forum of UN General Assembly session.
Moreover, Sardar Akhtar Mengal of Balochistan National Party-Mengal (BNP-M) said that the mini budget will directly or indirectly impact the common man. He also voiced concerns over the increase in gas price.
He added that Balochistan is not being provided electricity as per its requirement and demanded construction of dams as well as health and education facilities in Balochistan.
Responding to the points of Khawaja Asif and Sardar Akhtar Mengal in the National Assembly on Wednesday, she said during his visit to Saudi Arabia, Prime Minister Imran Khan made it clear that Pakistan is desirous of peace in the Muslim Ummah and offered the role of facilitator to end conflicts.
Shireen Mazari said, “Asif has only now remembered foreign policy when he is in the opposition.”
“The previous government’s foreign policy was not clear and it was never brought up in the parliament,” she added.
Further, Mazari said, “If opposition wants to play politics then we are also ready and if opposition focuses on resolving issues then we will also support them.”
“For the first time we contacted the United Kingdom (UK) over the money laundering issue and several accused have been arrested,” she asserted.
Dr Shireen Mazari said that due to the stance taken by the Prime Minister Imran Khan, the world is seeing a dawn of new foreign policy in Pakistan, based on mutual respect and interest, as our policy is not based on compromises.
The minister said that Pakistan is still facing the side effects of the compromises made by the previous government. She added that the minister Balochistan will now be given due share in their resources and development.
She regretted that the previous governments neglected the province and never fulfilled the promises made with the people of Balochistan. She said the government is also working to address the issue of enforced disappearances.
Moreover, responding to a calling attention notice, Minister of State for Interior Shehryar Afridi said that effective precautionary measures have been taken to check the spread of dengue fever in the federal capital.
He pointed out that the government has started fumigation against dengue in the federal capital territory, adding that an awareness campaign has also been launched by taking on board all the stakeholders including the civil society to check the spread of this virus.